Monday, May 6, 2013

Easy Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka Masala
Why go out for Indian when you can make this spicy, creamy dish at home? 
I got this from a friend’s husband who discovered the original recipe on
I finally decided to try it myself and it was so easy!  It rivals any restaurant Tikka Masala that I have ever had……at least here in Denver.  Your friends and family will be dying to get the recipe!

I love the flavors of the jalapeno and cumin in the sauce, combined with the delicate flavors of cinnamon, lemon and cumin in the chicken marinade.  The sauce is a deliciously complex and subtle blend of spices, with the heat of the cayenne and the jalapeno behind it.  This recipe makes about 6 servings – or four servings for very hungry peeps…lol!

Chicken Marinade:
1 cup yogurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
Salt to taste
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed into ½ inch to 1 inch pieces
4 long skewers or a grill basket for holding the chicken while grilling

In a medium to large bowl, mix together the yogurt, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger and salt.  Stir in the chicken pieces, cover and marinate for 1 hour in the refrigerator.   

Preheat the grill on high heat, lightly oiling the grill grate if using skewers.  If using a grill basket, spray the inside with non-stick cooking spray and place chicken in basket, discard marinade.  Place the chicken pieces on skewers if using skewers.  Grill the chicken about 5 minutes on each side over high heat until juices run clear. 

Sauce Ingredients:
1 tbsp butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp paprika
Salt to taste
1 (8ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup heavy cream
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro for garnish (optional)

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Saute garlic and jalapeno for 1 minute.  Stir in 2 teaspoons cumin, paprika, and salt.  Add in tomato sauce and cream, stirring to combine well.  Simmer on low heat for about 20 minutes until sauce thickens, being careful not to let it boil or scald. 

Add in grilled chicken and simmer for 10 more minutes.  Serve over Basmati rice and garnish with cilantro, if desired.  Warm Naan or pita bread goes great on the side!